Tuesday, February 9, 2016

Perceiving With New Eyes

In 2003 I wrote, "some things I want to think when interacting with another," and I took it to work with me to read when I needed reminding how I chose to see others (and myself!). This is it: 

This person before me now is my beloved brother/sister born of the same holy God/Source as myself. Like me they have chosen to forget the glorious perfection that they are to incarnate for the purpose of being able to experience, express and evolve. This choice is not always easy and is a gift of great love given to the whole, for we are all one body. 

As a human being in this world, this beloved person before me has forgotten Who They Really Are and lives in doubt of their incredible magnificience. She may have forgotten her beauty and feels ugly, forgotten his immeasurable value and feels worthless, forgotten her unlimited power and feels helpless, forgotten that his life is eternal and feels in danger of losing his life, forgotten her oneness with all that is and feels alone and isolated, forgotten his royal identity and feels like nobody special, forgotten her giftedness and feels incompetent, forgotten that his choices all lead Home and feels lost and afraid of failure, forgotten how totally loved and cherished she is and feels forgotten and unloved. 

I can understand, therefore, that, just like me, when this beloved person before me acts in ways that are not loving or kind it is only because they are in this state of forgetfulness. They believe they must compete to get the love and security they already have and work hard to become the worthy and valuable persons that they already are. They are suffering like a small child who has become immersed in a horror movie and believes the monsters are real and out to get him/her. Thus, when this beloved person before me attacks another or tries to make themselves invisible it is because they are afraid and believe they must defend themselves or be destroyed. They may try to appear bigger and better than another because they really feel small and helpless, or they may act small and helpless because they believe that going unnoticed is the only way to be safe. 

To be of service to this beloved person before me I will respect and care for their feelings. However, no matter how flawed they perceive themselves to be, I will choose to see their incredible beauty, their immeasurable value and worth, their unlimited power and strength, their unique giftedness, their God identity, their eternal connection with myself and all things, and their lovableness. 

God help me to not just know these things with my mind, but to truely perceive and experience them. Help me to see others as You see them and to love them as You love them that they might know again the wonder of Who They Really Are!

Later I added:

I make up all kinds of techniques, or games as I like to call them, to help me shift my perception from the “ordinary” way of looking at people (or anything else for that matter), to seeing them with “new eyes”. When I take the time to perceive others as holy extensions of the same Source as myself instead of as objects who may either satisfy or thwart my needs, I become more attentive, open and respectful. Instead of being critical and judgmental, I find myself listening with compassion and understanding. It feels really good!  Whoever said it is more fun to be loving than to be right, was right! Not only does it feel good to be the one extending love, but it feels good to the recipient. They may have expected annoyance, indifference, defensivness, anger, or counterattack, anything but being seen and heard and valued. This brings the relationship to a totally different level with unimagined possibilities for real communication and resolution of differences!

Loving people as I described earlier may sound like a real challenge, more an ideal than a reality, but I know that the better I get at it the more incredible my life becomes. I've had ecstatic kinds of experiences being what felt like a channel of pure love and once you get bitten by the bug there's no turning back. Being a source of love and healing becomes the "pearl of great price," the focus of desire. I used to think that the prayer of St. Francis of Asissi sounded like a difficult sacrifice (to be the source of comfort etc. rather than to be comforted). Now I see it as the most wonderfully selfish prayer I know. To be a giver there must be a reciever, and let me tell you it's a lot more FUN being in a place of wanting to give all than a place of needing to receive it (although the giving and receiving all becomes one thing anyway!).

This description/poem I wrote describes this feeling:

I celebrate your gentle presence with me here now. 
Like the steady glow of a candle flame, 
you warm the darkness with your soft touch. 
When I let myself be with you - 
when I let myself feel your loving gaze upon me - 
I want to laugh at all my funny fears. 
I want to dance with abandon to 
the intoxicating music of life that is you. 
Filled with your song, I have no desire 
other than to sing in harmony with your many voices. 
Oh that my presence in this world can be an open channel 
pouring forth your sweet and tender love on all. 
Oh what a privilege, oh what heavenly joy! 
You are the source, you are life. 
There is nothing more I could ask than to be your vessel. 
Let it be me, dear God, let it be me. 
Today and always, 
Thank-you, God, thank-you.

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